Category Archives for "General Dentistry"

Adult Orthodontic Treatment: Braces vs. Clear Retainers

Dental medical car

Although childhood is the ideal time to correct any positioning problems with your teeth, many people didn’t have the opportunity as children to get the dental care they needed. In addition, dentistry has progressed tremendously over the past 20 years, which means the options on offer now far outpace those that were available in the 1980s and 1990s. Adult orthodontics include Invisalign from our Scarborough dental office, which enables you to enhance your smile regardless of your current age. You aren’t alone, either, because the American Association of Orthodontists states that one in four orthodontic patients is over age 18.

Types of Adult Orthodontics

Adult orthodontic patients seek treatment for a range of dental concerns, including a crossbite, crooked teeth, overcrowding, or gaps between the teeth. The most common forms of treatment are the use of braces, and fortunately the days of unsightly metal braces or unwieldy headgear are gone. Options now include braces, Invisalign aligners, and clear retainers. Many of these are almost invisible, although even braces with visible components are less unattractive than in the past. Here are some of the benefits of choosing Invisalign vs. braces.


Many adult orthodontic issues can be treated effectively by fitting the patient with braces, which have traditionally been used for decades. Braces now come in a range of streamlined models, including some made from tooth-coloured ceramic. This helps them to be less obvious in the mouth, although they do still have visible components such as wires or rubber bands. The braces are attached to your teeth for the duration of the treatment and are not removable. Although most patients quickly get used to wearing braces, they do require extra care to keep the teeth clean. Wearers are also discouraged from eating certain foods that can cause damage to the braces.

Invisalign Treatment

When you choose Invisalign orthodontic treatment, you’ll be fitted for a series of clear aligners that gradually change the position of the teeth. They are thin, plastic-type trays made according to your impressions, which fit perfectly over your teeth. These are engineered to put gentle pressure on the problem teeth, guiding them slowly into place.

You’ll be required to change to a new aligner every two weeks, or according to the schedule our Invisalign Scarborough dentist provides. The aligners are not only virtually invisible, but are also removable for eating, brushing, or briefly on social occasions. As long as you wear them for at least 22 hours a day, you’ll receive the benefit of the treatment.

Wearing Clear Retainers Afterwards

Most patients are required to wear clear retainers for at least 6 months after Invisalign treatment ends, to maintain the results delivered by the aligners. In some instances, you may have to wear these for longer, depending on your individual situation. Our Invisalign dentists in Scarborough will be able to determine whether you need to go on wearing retainers and for how long.

Cost Factors

Invisalign cost in Canada ranges from $2,000 to $8,000. According to manufacturers, treatment can cost between $3,000 and $9,000, but having dental insurance can significantly reduce costs. Most insurance companies pay for your dental visits, and a portion of the treatment cost for each year you’re having treatment. The initial cost of traditional braces could be slightly lower, but any repairs or replacement parts will be for your account or your insurance. This means that for patients who are eligible for either procedure, the costs are comparable.

Resolving your dental issues and enhancing your smile can be life-changing, and with the advancements in adult orthodontics there’s no reason why you shouldn’t benefit from the opportunities available. To schedule an appointment to discuss your options with an experienced, compassionate Invisalign dentist in Scarborough, please call 416-291-3117 or click here to contact us today.

Important Dentistry Milestones in Your Child’s Life

Child at the dentistry

Every parent wants to keep their children’s oral health in peak condition, and that means getting quality dental care from the outset. Just like other types of healthcare, there are some important dentistry dates you should observe to achieve this, starting with your little one’s very first appointment with our family dentist in Scarborough.

First Dental Visit

Your child’s first to the dentist is a momentous occasion. It’s essential to find an office that offers pediatric dentistry as a service option, because there are a number of issues affecting kids’ dental care that don’t apply to adults. One of these is the arrival of primary or “baby” teeth, which usually begins between 4 and 6 months of age. This is the best time to bring your baby in for an examination, discuss your family history with the dentist, and to ensure the child has a strong foundation for a healthy mouth later in life.

As the little one’s baby teeth develop, make sure you have the benefits of regular dental check-ups by scheduling a visit every 6 months. Many people don’t realize the importance of keeping the primary teeth in their correct position until they fall out naturally. This is vital for the sound development of permanent teeth, however, because the primaries support the structure of a child’s mouth and help with speech development.

Getting Baby Teeth

Between the ages of 6 and 12 months, most children first get their upper and lower front teeth or central incisors. These are followed by lateral incisors between 10 and 16 months, and the first molars between 13 and 19 months. By 2 years old they should have enough primary teeth for them to be touching each other, and all 20 expected baby teeth should arrive by age 3. Remember, though, that all children are different, and that this can cause these timelines to vary. In addition, girls often develop faster than boys do, and they might both get and lose their baby teeth earlier as a result.

Learning Oral Hygiene

Proper tooth brushing and flossing are critical for lifelong good oral health, and the earlier your child begins learning to do this regularly the better. By the age of 1 year, most children should have undergone at least one visit to our family dentist in Scarborough. You can begin teaching a child at this age to accept a soft bristle toothbrush and to spit out the toothpaste after cleaning. If it’s too soon for toothpaste, brushing even with a little water is a good way to start building sound oral care habits.

Once all the baby teeth have erupted, learning to floss is a useful addition to the daily brushing routine. Encourage your little ones to floss after each meal, even if it isn’t being done as effectively (or regularly) as you’d like. By establishing robust dental hygiene routines early, you can help to prevent dental problems from arising in the future.

Receiving Permanent Teeth

On average, children start losing their baby teeth between 6 and 7 years old, followed by the eruption of the first permanent molars. These are new teeth in that they don’t replace any baby teeth, and that means they are occasionally mistaken for primary teeth. Once these start to erupt, it’s imperative that your child has learned to exercise good dental hygiene, because the molars play an important role in determining the shape of the face and the position—and health—of the other permanent teeth. By age 13, most children have 28 permanent teeth and are only lacking their third molars or wisdom teeth.

Orthodontic Check

At our family dentist in Scarborough, we recommend every child gets an orthodontic check by the age of 7 years. The reason for this is to see whether the child has any potential problems that could cause permanent teeth to erupt in unsuitable positions. At this stage in the natural growth processes. it’s possible to correct issues such as a crossbite or to use an appliance to expand the palate if the child is at risk of tooth overcrowding. If serious conditions like these are left untreated, the child might need oral surgery later to correct them.

Wisdom Teeth

The third molars or wisdom teeth usually come in between 17 and 25 years, and often erupt without any problems. We often discover, however, that a patient’s mouth is too crowded for the third molars to develop in the correct position behind the second molars. When this happens, the molars become impacted inside the gum tissue, where they are difficult to reach and clean. This makes them vulnerable to tooth decay and can cause gum disease, bad breath, pain, and swelling. Frequently, wisdom teeth are removed surgically even if they don’t present problems, to avoid issues later in life.

To schedule appointments for every stage of your child’s dental development with an experienced, compassionate family dentist in Scarborough, please call 416-291-3117 or click here to contact us today.

Types of Cosmetic Dentistry and How They Benefit You

General dentistry is focused on maintaining your oral health through prevention and treatment of diseases. Cosmetic dentistry, however, deals with the overall appearance of your teeth and mouth, and how they contribute to the way you look and feel. It’s important to know what the difference is between the two, because it will help you determine what services you need and what to consider when you’re looking for the best cosmetic dentist in Scarborough.

Types of Cosmetic Dentistry

Enhancing your smile can have amazing results on your life, by boosting your confidence and self-esteem. Smile more with the latest advances in cosmetic dentistry, which is a service that ranges from basic color correction to the restoration of missing teeth. The most popular types of cosmetic dentistry include:

1. Teeth whitening
2. Dental veneers
3. Dental bonding and
4. White fillings

The best solution for each patient depends on how severe their cosmetic dental problem is, their age, state of health, and budget or dental insurance. Whatever your situation, our experienced practitioners at the best dentist in Scarborough will be able to develop a customized plan for you. This plan will often make use of several different types of cosmetic dentistry to provide you with the best option.

Benefits of Cosmetic Dentistry

There are many reasons why having an attractive smile makes you both look and feel better about yourself. While a minor chip in a tooth may not be a critical health issue, dental bonding will improve the way you present yourself overall. Don’t think of cosmetic dentistry only in relation to appearance, either, because there are also many great functional benefits to this type of treatment.

Enhanced appearance

There’s a common saying that you only get one chance to make a good first impression, and it’s true. Life might not all be about your appearance, but enhancing your appearance definitely has advantages. Improving your exterior makes you feel better about yourself, which impacts the way you interact with other people as well as your own feelings of self-esteem. If stained and discoloured teeth prevent you from smiling, then it stands to reason that porcelain veneers and teeth whitening will resolve the problem. Don’t underestimate the importance of showing your full smile when you meet someone, whether it’s during a job interview or while you’re on a first date.

More self-confidence

The benefits of gaining self-confidence aren’t always obvious. Your self-esteem impacts every facet of your life, from personal relationships to your professional career. The benefits of cosmetic dentistry treatments such as teeth whitening and dental bonding include improving the appearance of chipped or cracked teeth, which in turn increases your self-confidence.

Enriched diet and lifestyle

Missing, painful or sensitive teeth makes it challenging to speak and chew, particularly when it comes to certain types of food. If you have a malocclusion or uneven bite, it not only affects your appearance but can also have an effect on your digestion. Problems that seem minor can therefore have a major impact on your diet and nutrition. Cosmetic dentistry procedures such as crowns and bridges help to strengthen your bite and improve your ability to chew. This not only benefits your physical health but your mental health too.

Better dental (and overall) health

Cosmetic dentistry benefits your overall health almost as much as your dental health. Procedures like dental implants can prevent future damage to your bone and gums, while inlays and onlays help to protect your tooth enamel from deterioration. Regular checkups and cleaning prevents the build-up of plaque and tartare, and help to identify problems requiring treatments like root canal therapy before they become critical.

Upgraded financial outlook

Dental care is expensive, and anything you can do to protect your teeth, bones and gum tissue helps save you money in the long term. These various types of cosmetic dentistry can optimize your oral health and your smile, which gives your confidence a boost. In addition, the right treatments can also positively impact your career and improve your financial outlook, while helping you to avoid future costly procedures.

Consult with the best cosmetic dentist in Scarborough to find out how we can support your oral health efforts. Please call 416-291-3117 or click here to schedule an appointment today.

6 Reasons to Consider Getting Dental Crowns

A crown or dental cap is a type of dental restoration that completely encompasses a tooth or dental implant. These can be manufactured from various materials, including metals such as gold or another alloy, porcelain, resin, or ceramic. At Havenview Dental Centre we commonly recommend high-quality, porcelain dental crowns for Scarborough patients, for several very important reasons.

Reason #1: To protect an endangered tooth

We only grow one set of permanent teeth in a lifetime, and once a tooth is damaged it could be compromised forever. If you have any teeth that are weakened from decay, cracked, chipped, or at any other risk of breaking or getting worse, a crown can stop the problem from progressing further. The patient’s age doesn’t matter when it comes to fitting dental crowns, which makes it a viable option for teens, adults, and seniors alike.

Reason #2: To restore an already-damaged tooth

A tooth that is already broken can be restored, if you get dental treatment early enough. In cases where a tooth is cracked right through, provided all parts are still secured in the gum a dental crown might be able to save it by holding the sections of tooth together. Nobody will ever know your tooth was in danger of being lost completely and that it’s a simple restoration that looks so good. Dental crowns for front teeth are especially popular, because their visibility plays a big role in your life.

Reason #3: To cover and support the remains of a tooth

If you’ve lost part of a tooth, whether through the development of a large cavity, a mouth injury, or simply crunching on your favourite hard foods, your best option is to get the remaining piece built up with dental material and then covered with a shiny, new crown. Our dentists can insert a large section of filling material that functions like a natural tooth, but it won’t be as good as new. By covering it with a dental crown, however, you not only make it look as good as it should, but you provide it with the support necessary for lasting strength.

Reason #4: To provide support for a dental bridge

A dental bridge is a common way to restore two or more missing teeth, but it needs to be supported by teeth at either end. If the teeth on each side of the gap are weak, loose, or damaged, they might not be strong enough to support a dental bridge. Our dentists in Scarborough might recommend dental crowns for covering one or both of the supporting teeth, which will not only strengthen the tooth but protect it from becoming worn by the bridge.

Reason #5: To cover unsightly or discoloured teeth

One of the most common and highly noticeable defects in any smile is a single ugly or stained tooth. Nobody wants to extract an ugly tooth while it’s healthy, though, so the ideal solution is to cover it with a dental crown. In cases of misshapen teeth, our dentists will remove some of the tooth material during preparation. After that, a dental crown is mounted on top of it using dental cement, to make it match the appearance of your other teeth.

Reason #6: To cover a dental implant

Dental implants are a popular way to restore lost teeth. The implant is a metal post or abutment that’s inserted into your jawbone in the same location as the missing tooth. Once the gum tissue has healed over around the post, a dental crown is cemented onto the post to resemble the tooth that originally stood there. Although the crown isn’t actually part of the implant, it’s an important part of the treatment because without it, the patient will still be without a tooth!

The most common porcelain dental crown procedure involves the dentist taking an impression of the tooth, then having the tooth fabricated outside of the mouth. The crown is then fitted during a second appointment.

For more information on dental crowns, Scarborough patients are invited to consult with our experienced, compassionate dental team to find out if a crown is the right option for you. Please call 416-291-3117 or click here to schedule an appointment today.

Why (and How Often) You Need Deep Teeth Cleaning in Scarborough

When your dentist recommends deep teeth cleaning, it’s because he or she can see signs that your daily oral hygiene regimen isn’t enough to prevent the buildup of tartar. One of the most important types of dental cleaning included in hygiene therapy, deep cleaning is vital for maintaining a healthy smile for life. Let’s take a look at when—and why—deep teeth cleaning is appropriate for Scarborough patients, and how often this is likely to be needed during an average adult’s lifetime.

Reasons for Needing Deep Teeth Cleaning in Scarborough

We all have a certain amount of bacteria in the mouth, which combines with other substances to form plaque on the teeth. Regular daily oral hygiene takes care of much of the plaque, but any that doesn’t get brushed and flossed away can harden and develop into tartar. Unless this is removed professionally, it stays on the teeth and can cause gingivitis or gum inflammation. Regular deep cleaning can prevent this from happening, rather than having you wait for it to begin.

What Happens Without Deep Teeth Cleaning

When gingivitis is left untreated, it can advance into a more serious form of gum disease called periodontitis. The gum tissue pulls away from the teeth, creating spaces or pockets in which oral bacteria can easily hide. Over time, this causes infection of the gum tissue that connects to your teeth, and it could recede enough to expose and damage the jawbone holding the teeth in place. This can result in potential tooth loss or even infection in the jawbone.

You might see additional signs that show deep teeth cleaning is necessary, including:

1. Redness, swelling or bleeding of the gums
2. Continuous bad breath
3. Signs that your teeth are getting “longer”
4. Tender, sensitive teeth and gums
5. Pain when you bite or chew
6. Loose teeth

Deep teeth cleaning in Scarborough at Havenview Dental, is the first step towards halting gum disease in its tracks and preventing you from losing teeth. Since inflammation anywhere in your body can affect your heart and overall health, this measure will also help to stop you from developing other long-term consequences.

What Deep Dental Cleaning Involves

Deep cleaning is also called scaling and root planing (SRP), and while it’s a similar process to the regular teeth cleaning your hygienist does, it focuses on the parts of the tooth below the gum line and the external surface of the roots. The dentist uses a hand-held scaler to scrape the thickest plaque from your teeth, right down to the bottom of the pockets. This is followed by using an ultrasonic vibrating tool and water spray to remove the tartar.

The root planing part of the process involves cleaning and smoothing the surfaces so the gum tissue can reattach to the teeth. Here’s a video from the American Dental Association illustrating the procedure, which is pain-free and takes our Scarborough dental office about an hour to perform. The treatment ends with a thorough tooth polishing and a concentrated fluoride treatment to keep your teeth healthy and sparkling for the next few months.

How Often You Should Have Your Teeth Deep-Cleaned in Scarborough

Everyone is different, and so is the amount of attention each person pays to dental hygiene. We typically recommend that in addition to regular dental checkups, patients with healthy mouths have a deep dental cleaning every 2 to 3 years to prevent the accumulation of plaque that can lead to problems later in life.

Maintaining a healthy dental hygiene program is important for good oral (and overall) health. Our qualified dentists and hygienists work closely with patients to ensure you not only keep your teeth clean, but that your gums stay healthy too!

To book your deep teeth cleaning in Scarborough, please call 416-291-3117 or click here to schedule an appointment.

How Can I Close the Gap Between My Teeth?

First impressions count, as anyone will tell you who has had a job interview that went wrong from the first minute. They shouldn’t, but they do, and your mother was right when she said you should
put your best foot forward with a warm, friendly smile .If you’re holding back because you feel self-conscious about a gap between your teeth, however, that will come through to the person you’re meeting and seem like a lack of confidence.

The good news is that closing a tooth gap between your front teeth is possible, and while there are several ways to do it, the best method ultimately depends on the cause of your particular gap.

Identifying the Cause​​​​

A gap between two teeth is a condition called diastema, and it can happen to anyone at any age. The gap’s favourite spot to develop is right in the front of the mouth between the two central teeth. If this happens to a child, chances are good the gap will disappear with the arrival of permanent teeth, but if it happens to an adult that’s unlikely.The most common causes of a diastema include:

  • Having small teeth. People who have small natural teeth might find their teeth aren’t accurately sized for their jawbone area. This causes them to erupt further apart than they should, which means they aren’t stable and supported in their positions. If there’s space to move, your tooth will find it, and once it moves, it creates a gap on one side or the other.
  • Extra gum tissue between your two front teeth. You’ve seen this before, when someone has a space between their teeth and the gum tissue seems to push its way into the gap. Although the gum overgrowth is caused by having an available space into which to grow, the growth puts additional pressure on the teeth to separate even further.
  • Thumb sucking. Yes, most people outgrow this in early childhood, but anyone whose habit goes on past the arrival of permanent teeth might cause damage with the pressure of the thumb behind the top front teeth. This can cause them to loosen, shift or protrude, resulting in a gap.
  • Gum disease. Anyone with untreated gum disease is at risk for tooth loss, and once you lose one the others start to move to fill the empty space, resulting in gaps between your teeth. It’s vitally important to always replace a missing tooth with a bridge, crown, or dental implant. While you’re waiting to have this done, you can get a partial denture to keep your other teeth secure.
  • Incorrect swallowing. This has the same effect as thumb sucking, which is pressure on the back of the front teeth. The tongue can push the teeth forward to the point that a gap starts to form.

Depending on the cause of your gap-toothed smile, you might be able to choose whether to repair it or not. Many people have lived very active and successful lives without closing a tooth gap, so it’s entirely your decision.

Ways to Close the Gap

Our dental clinic in Scarborough has a number of options for resolving these gaps. Removable retainers are great if your problem isn’t too severe, but they take a bit longer than some of the other methods. In addition, you might find you have to wear a retainer on and off for many years to prevent the teeth moving again.

Orthodontic treatment is a common method, because whether you are eligible to use Invisalign or need traditional metal braces, both of these will apply pressure to your teeth and move them closer to each other. Your choice of options depends on how severe the condition is.

Dental bonding can help if your tooth gap is small, or if it’s the result of a chipped or cracked tooth. Your dentist will use tooth-coloured composite material to fill the gap, which looks exactly like the rest of your natural teeth. Porcelain veneers help to cover damaged teeth, and can be extended to cover dental bonding material if the dentist has to rebuild a broken tooth.

If you’re closing a tooth gap that’s fairly large or you have an actual missing tooth, a dental bridge attached to the teeth on either side supports an artificial tooth in its place. You can also choose to replace a missing tooth with a dental implant, which is an artificial tooth mounted on a metal post that’s inserted into your gum.

Patients who have gum diseases will need to have treatment for the infection before addressing the gap. This could include scaling and root planning of the teeth and/or a surgical procedure to remove tartar from the gums.

For more information on how closing a tooth gap will change your life, please contact us to schedule a consultation.

The Importance of Getting Regular Dental Check-Ups

Few people look forward to dental visits, no matter how much they like their dentist! That’s no reason to skip keeping those bi-annual appointments, however, which are as essential for maintaining healthy gums and teeth as a daily oral hygiene routine is. Make it a point to have regular dental check-ups as often as your dentist recommends them. You’ll spare yourself pain, suffering and additional cost over the long term by doing so!

How Often You Should Go for a Dental Check-Up

The Canadian Dental Association advocates six-monthly visits for check-ups, although your dentist might recommend you come more (or less) often, depending on your individual needs. If you brush your teeth twice a day, floss at least once, follow a well-balanced diet, and limit your quantities of sugary drinks and foods, the standard frequency should be enough for you.

Dental patients with poor overall health who get problems like bleeding gums or toothache might need to see the dentist more often, until they get their dental health under control.

What Happens During a Dental Check-up

During a regular dental check-up, the dentist will  check your teeth for signs of cavities , loose teeth, and plaque and tartar buildup. They might take X-rays to see if you have cavities that aren’t easily seen, and if there are any issues beneath your gums that need attention. X-rays are usually taken every couple of years. Provided you go to the same dental office for each checkup you likely won’t need them more often than that.

The examination will include checking the gums with a special dental tool, which measures how deep the spaces are between the teeth and gums. Healthy gums have shallow spaces, while deeper spaces could be a sign of gum disease.

Your appointment will usually end with a professional teeth cleaning  by a dental hygienist, which includes planing and scaling of the teeth to remove accumulated plaque. This is followed by a thorough flossing and polishing, leaving your mouth feeling sparkling clean and healthy.

Benefits of Regular Dental Examinations

Apart from the obvious benefits of detecting cavities and infections early, during a regular dental check-up your dentist has the opportunity to take note of any changes to your oral cavity, your head and your neck. All of these can be early signs of jaw or bite problems, or oral cancer.

Science has proved there’s a strong link between oral health and overall health, and especially between gum disease and heart disease. Getting your mouth inspected and your teeth cleaned every six months can go a long way towards preventing other health problems before they start. You can also arrange future appointments to have tooth fillings, extractions or any root canal procedures you might need.

Preventing tooth decay is critical, because if it’s left untreated it can lead to periodontal disease, hypertension, diabetes, kidney failure, stroke, and other medical conditions that might only be detected when you reach an advanced stage.

From a financial viewpoint, getting treatment for dental problems before they become serious can help to reduce the cost of your dentist bill. If you need extensive work done, spacing out the treatments or payments can also be helpful, and many dentists are prepared to offer payment plans for regular patients of their practice.

For more information or to start your schedule of regular dental check-ups, please contact Havenview Dental Centre.